Prepostions of Place - in, on, at.

Some students, or rather one student in particular, would like to review Prepositions of Place.

We generally use:
  • on for surfaces (attached to or touching the surface)
  • at for points (exact position or location)
  • in for enclosed spaces (inside something)

I think it's better to learn with examples:


ON

I left my keys on the desk.
The exercise about prepositions is on page 42.
There were no chairs so I sat on the floor.
Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of them all?
I lay on the sofa and watched a film.
Is that a cat on the roof of the building?



AT

I think there is someone at the door. Can you answer it?
The bookshop is at the end of the road.
I'll ask the girl at the reception if she can phone us a taxi.
I always sat at the back of the class when I was at school.
He met his girlfriend at a disco.
I'm going to stay at my parents' next weekend.




IN

My sister lives in Ireland.
I left my mobile in the car.
Look in the drawer. I think the papers are there.
Have you read what is in today's newspaper?
The security guard checked to see there was nobody in the building.
I was so tired. I stayed in bed until 11am.






Look at these other examples:

I didn't go to work today. I stayed at home.
The dog isn't allowed in the house. (= He must stay outside)


He's going to study law at the Glasgow University.
Did you study French at the school?
There are some dictionaries in the classroom.


I'm in the taxi now.
I'm on the train now.


Can you call back later? He isn't in the office at the moment. (= He's outside)
Are you at the work / at/in the office?


The cat sat on the table.
Dinner is ready. Come and sit at the table.


There is a plant in the corner of the room.
There is a tree on the corner of the street.
I'll meet you at the corner of the street.


Have you heard the news? The King is in the hospital again. (He's a patient)
He works in a hospital.
He's at the hospital visiting his grandmother.





What is the missing preposition?
  1. Is that a spider __ the ceiling?
  2. There are some books and a vase __ the shelf.
  3. I keep my mobile __ my jacket pocket.
  4. I live __ the fifth floor.
  5. It's Sunday morning. He will be __ church. 
  6. She was __ the shops on Friday afternoon.
  7. Who is that next to you __ the photo?
  8. Waiter! There is a fly __ my soup.
  9. I met your new neighbour __ the lift.
  10. I was __ my bike when I saw her.
  11. The grammar reference is __ the end of the book.
  12. I have a picture of my wife and children __ my wallet.
  13. My friends jumped into the sea but I stayed __ the boat.
  14. My suitcase is __ the bottom of the stairs.
  15. He won't be here until 12. He's __ the doctor's.
  16. He's __ prison. He won't be out until next October.
  17. They've lived __ the countryside for ten years or so.
  18. Can you find Timbuktu __ a map?
  19. I was __ the meeting until very late.
  20. That was a good film __ TV last night.
  21. I was __ my friend's birthday party on Saturday.
  22. He met his wife __ a wedding.
  23. I think there is a hairdresser's __ the left.
  24. I don't want to spend all afternoon __ the beach.
  25. I love hiking __ the mountains.
  26. She has a small scar __ her face.
  27. I think I have a fly __ my eye.
  28. He must be __ the cinema. He doesn't answer his phone.
  29. Once I left my passport __ the plane.
  30. The children were __ the zoo last weekend.



Comments

Montse said…
This is a really difficult exercise.

Is that a spider ON the ceiling?
There are some books and a vase ON the shelf.
I keep my mobile IN my jacket pocket.
I live ON the fifth floor.
It's Sunday morning. He will be AT church. 
She was IN the shops on Friday afternoon.
Who is that next to you IN the photo?
Waiter! There is a fly IN my soup.
I met your new neighbour IN the lift.
I was ON my bike when I saw her.
The grammar reference is AT the end of the book.
I have a picture of my wife and children IN my wallet.
My friends jumped into the sea but I stayed ON the boat.
My suitcase is AT the bottom of the stairs.
He won't be here until 12. He's AT the doctor's.
He's IN prison. He won't be out until next October.
They've lived IN the countryside for ten years or so.
Can you find Timbuktu ON a map?
I was AT the meeting until very late.
That was a good film ON TV last night.
I was AT my friend's birthday party on Saturday.
He met his wife IN a wedding.
I think there is a hairdresser's ON the left.
I don't want to spend all afternoon IN the beach.
I love hiking ON the mountains.
She has a small scar ON her face.
I think I have a fly IN my eye.
He must be AT the cinema. He doesn't answer his phone.
Once I left my passport IN the plane.
The children were IN the zoo last weekend.

See you on Thursday!
Graham said…
Hi Montse,

Let's wait until José has a go at the exercise on Saturday. I hope it keeps him happy. :-))))
José said…
Hi Graham

1.Is that a spider on the ceiling?
2.There are some books and a vase on the shelf.
3.I keep my mobile in my jacket pocket.
4.I live on the fifth floor.
5.It's Sunday morning. He will be in church.
6.She was in the shops on Friday afternoon.
7.Who is that next to you in the photo?
8.Waiter! There is a fly in my soup.
9.I met your new neighbour at the lift.
10.I was on my bike when I saw her.
11.The grammar reference is at the end of the book.
12.I have a picture of my wife and children in my wallet.
13.My friends jumped into the sea but I stayed in the boat.
14.My suitcase is at the bottom of the stairs.
15.He won't be here until 12. He's at the doctor's.
16.He's in prison. He won't be out until next October.
17.They've lived in the countryside for ten years or so.
18.Can you find Timbuktu on a map?
19.I was at the meeting until very late.
20.That was a good film on TV last night.
21.I was on my friend's birthday party on Saturday.
22.He met his wife in a wedding.
23.I think there is a hairdresser's on the left.
24.I don't want to spend all afternoon on the beach.
25.I love hiking in the mountains.
26.She has a small scar on her face.
27.I think I have a fly in my eye.
28.He must be in the cinema. He doesn't answer his phone.
29.Once I left my passport on the plane.
30.The children were in the zoo last weekend.

This blog was incomplete, but now, with preposition of place, the blog is absolute, thanks me.

I´m sure that my exercise is corret. I´m sure it´s better than another of Montse, but as she is your teacher pet, for you the exercise of Montse will be better. ¡What injustice!

P. S. Your examples help me too much. LOL.

See you. José
Graham said…
Let's see who get's more right....

5.It's Sunday morning. He will be IN/AT CHURCH. (both are correct)

6.She was AT THE SHOPS on Friday afternoon. (place)

9.I met your new neighbour IN THE LIFT. (inside)

13.My friends jumped into the sea but I stayed ON THE BOAT. (transport)

21.I was AT MY FRIEND'S BIRTHDAY PARTY on Saturday. (event)

22. He met his wife AT A WEDDING. (event)

24. I don't want to spend all afternoon ON THE BEACH.

25. I love hiking IN THE MOUNTAINS.

28.He must be AT/IN THE CINEMA. He doesn't answer his phone.

29.Once I left my passport ON THE PLANE.

30.The children were AT THE ZOO last weekend. (animals are in cages in the zoo)


Amazingly, it's a draw.

Well done to both of you :-)



This blog was incomplete, but now, with prepositions of place, the blog is absolute, thanks to me.

I´m sure it´s better than the other one by Montse, but as she is your teacher's pet, for you the exercise of Montse will be better. ¡What injustice! / How unfair!

P. S. Your examples help me a lot. LOL.




Graham said…
Ooooops!

Just notice a typo. :$

Let's see who gets more right...
Graham said…
OMG!

Just noticed another typo.

I really have to be more careful.
José said…
You are clever, Graham. You and me know that Montse goes above my level. After my joke, I´m glad and give my congratulations to her for it.


I enjoy participating in your blog, because I´m not expert on the English prepositions, but I know that if I study on holiday, because I can´t in my Department, in my Ministry, I´ll be at summit of knowledge. I would like to study at the College, in the Section of Languages, in a village or in a town, for example, in Inverness, in Scotland. I have in mind, in the next year, travelling to Scotland, in balloon, in first class of balloon and meeting with some friend in a bar, in which there are more drunks. But I wouldn´t mind, on the theme of English language, going to English class at night, at the first time, when the moon is in the sky, shines in the water, on the river and the dreams fly in the brain. I feel sorry in my soul to be so nonsensical.

See you. José.
Graham said…
Hi José,

Despite what others may think, your comments make much more sense now. I have managed to get into your mind. :-)

I enjoy participating in your blog, because I´m not an expert on English prepositions, but I know that if I study on holiday, because I can´t in my Department, in my Ministry, I´ll be at the summit of knowledge. I would like to study at college, in the Language department, in a village or in a town, for example, in Inverness, in Scotland. I have in mind, in the next year, to travel to Scotland, by balloon, in first class and meeting with some friend in a bar, in which there are more drunks. But I wouldn´t mind, on the theme of English language, going to English class at night, or first thing, when the moon is in the sky, shines on the water, on the river and dreams fly in the brain. I feel sorry in my soul to be so nonsensical.


Bravo!



Montse said…
Please, Graham keep the José's mind door a litle opened for me. I wasn't as lucky as you were :-)
Graham said…
Montse,

It takes time to enter - it's a heavy door - but you will get there in the end.

Keep José's mind door... / the door to José's mind...

José said…
Hey Montse

If you want to enter in my mind, you need a password.

Clouds reach all zeniths yet. Children refuse any zucchini yoghourt. The previous both sentences have a common thing. Montse, don´t came back zany looking for the password because I told you it yet. (It´s cryptic).

See you. José.

P. S. ...and the winner is...The Real Madrid...
José said…
Hey Montse

As you know, the password is crazy.

Clouds Reach All Zeniths Yet.

Children Refuse Any Zucchini Yoghourt.

The word zany means crazy.

See you.
Graham said…
Hi José

Zany is not quite the same as crazy. It describes someone that is funny because of eccentric things they do.

Are you crazy or zany?


Ps Real Madrid was the winner. ( No article :-) )
José said…
Thank you very much great teacher

I don´t agree with you because it can´t be Real Madrid but the Real Madrid. You say just the opposite of your own rules. You said in your blog (2ª rule) that: “We use the when the person or thing referred to is unique”. It´s obvious that the Real Madrid is unique, therefore it must take “the”. Also, you said in the 10ª rule of your blog that: “We use the before superlatives” and the Real Madrid is the first, the best and the superlative team, therefore when you write its noun you have to put the article “the”. I´m so sorry Lucía. LOL

See you.
Graham said…
José,

You have a fair point but languages sometimes defy any rules that there are.

Real Madrid is like Mount Everest - they are both unique but when referred to by name - don't take the article.

Accept it and move on :-))))))

Hello Graham this is the exercises:
1.Is that a spider on the ceiling?
2.There are some books and a vase on the shelf.
3.I keep my mobile in my jacket pocket.
4.I live on the fifth floor.
5.It's Sunday morning. He will be in church.
6.She was in the shops on Friday afternoon.
7.Who is that next to you in the photo?
8.Waiter! There is a fly in my soup.
9.I met your new neighbour at the lift.
10.I was on my bike when I saw her.
11.The grammar reference is at the end of the book.
12.I have a picture of my wife and children in my wallet.
13.My friends jumped into the sea but I stayed in the boat.
14.My suitcase is at the bottom of the stairs.
15.He won't be here until 12. He's at the doctor's.
16.He's in prison. He won't be out until next October.
17.They've lived in the countryside for ten years or so.
18.Can you find Timbuktu on a map?
19.I was at the meeting until very late.
20.That was a good film on TV last night.
21.I was on my friend's birthday party on Saturday.
22.He met his wife in a wedding.
23.I think there is a hairdresser's on the left.
24.I don't want to spend all afternoon on the beach.
25.I love hiking in the mountains.
26.She has a small scar on her face.
27.I think I have a fly in my eye.
28.He must be in the cinema. He doesn't answer his phone.
29.Once I left my passport on the plane.
30.The children were in the zoo last weekend.

Buy!!!
Graham said…
Hi Natalia,

This is the exercise:

5.It's Sunday morning. He will be in/at church.
6.She was at the shops on Friday afternoon.
9.I met your new neighbour in the lift.
13.My friends jumped into the sea but I stayed on the boat.
21.I was at my friend's birthday party on Saturday.
22.He met his wife at a wedding.
30.The children were at the zoo last weekend.

Well done!